What is Munchausen by Proxy?
Munchausen by Proxy is defined as the exaggeration, falsification or induction of illness by a caregiver in a person under their care (usually committed by a mother against her child) with internal gain being the primary motivating factor. The difference between Munchausen by Proxy and Medical Child Abuse is the motive of the criminal offender. In the vast majority of both of these crimes, the criminal offender knows what they are doing is wrong when they are doing it. This is the definition of legal sanity in many states within the United States of America.
One of the biggest misconceptions with the term Munchausen by Proxy is that it is some unknown mental disorder that eliminates the criminal offender’s culpability for the crime. In the vast majority of these criminal cases, this isn’t true. The most common psychological diagnosis with these criminal offenders is narcissistic disorder or borderline personality disorder. When given a standard psychological evaluation, many of these offenders will have no psychological findings. Of course, standard psychological tests rely on the person taking the test to self-report honestly, which these offenders almost never do, especially when they are suspected of this abuse.
Child Services in Texas receive zero training from the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services on this abuse. It is not taught in the academy and many child services investigators do not know what it is, much less how to investigate it when it lands on their desk. The same can be said for law enforcement. Texas is not the only state where this is the case. This is the norm throughout the United States. If you are on a Child Advocacy team, ask your members about his abuse. You might be surprised at their lack of knowledge.
Mike Weber Consulting provides one of a kind training on how to investigate this abuse at a reasonable price. MikeWeber has led criminal investigations into 18 claims of this abuse, leading to 7 convictions or guilty pleas with 2 cases pending, which is arguably more than any other investigator in the United States. There are other trainings that teach what this is, but no others that teach how to investigate this abuse. Trainings can be structured toward child services, law enforcement, medical personnel, primary care pediatricians, family court judges, criminal court judges, and prosecutors both civil and criminal, among others.